Through advocating contexts and exhibition frameworks for non-Western artistic production, these biennials help us rethink established categories in the realm of art history, including temporal and geographic markers, such as the idea of essential identities that seem to permeate concepts of African and Latin American art.
In this series we will address a number of questions that arise from the intersection of such cultural projects: What do artistic exchanges between these Biennials reveal about the cultural networks connecting Africa and Latin America? How do these exhibition strategies converse with emancipatory ideologies and projects such as anti-imperialism, pan-Africanism, third-worldism, and the notion of the global South? How does Havana deal with African art production; and what role is reserved to art from the diaspora in Dakar?
Sabrina Moura is a curator and editor based in São Paulo (Brazil). She is currently a PhD Candidate at the History Department at the University of Campinas.
(1) Initiated in 1959, post-revolutionary Cuban cultural policies founded institutions such as Casa de las Américas, the Instituto Cubano del Arte e Industria Cinematográficos (ICAIC), the Orquestra Sinfônica Nacional, among others. Under Senghor mandate’s, Senegal hosted the Festival Mondial des Arts Nègres, and founded the Musée Dynamique, the Théâtre National, the École des Arts du Sénegal, among other institutions.
(2) Belting, H et al.The global contemporary and the rise of new art worlds, 2013. Also refer Rojas Sostelo, M. The Other Network: The Havana Biennale and the Global South, The Global South, Vol. 5, No. 1, 2011.
(3) Pensa, Iolanda, La Biennale de Dakar comme projet de coopération et de développement, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, Paris, 2011.
(4) Abdoulayé Wade, Catalogue of the 5th Dakar Biennial , 2002, 5.
(5) Konate, Yacouba. “Dak’Art: The Making of Pan-Africanism & the Contemporary.”Art in Translation 5:4, 2009, 487-526. Also refer to Ugochukwu-Smooth Nzewi’s and Cédric Vincent’s writings on Dak’art, which include Contemporary And (C&); special issue on this biennial (printed version, no. 1, April, 2014).